Can Dogs Eat Pumpkin Pie? 

By Britt Kascjak

No, dogs should not eat pumpkin pie. While pumpkin offers many great benefits for your dog’s health, the spices are not safe. If you’re considering a Thanksgiving treat, try making a dog-friendly pumpkin snack instead. Just skip the unhealthy spices and your dog can join in the festivities. 

Is Pumpkin Pie a Good Snack for My Dog?

Are you looking for a way to treat your dog this Thanksgiving? Are you considering offering him a taste of your pumpkin pie?

Before you cut your dog a slice, there are a few important considerations.

While pumpkin itself can be a nutritious snack, pumpkin pie has a few more ingredients. The biggest concern being the pumpkin pie spices.

This seemingly innocent holiday treat could make your dog feel pretty ill.

Will Pumpkin Pie Hurt Dogs?

The biggest concern with pumpkin pie is the use of nutmeg in the standard spice mix.

Nutmeg contains a compound called myristicin. When consumed in large amounts, this compound is toxic for your dog.

Signs of nutmeg poisoning include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Dry mouth
  • Increased heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Confusion and disorientation
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures

Luckily, to experience poisoning your dog would have to eat a large quantity of the spice. More than is present in most baked goods.

In small amounts, nutmeg will usually cause nothing more than an upset stomach. But it’s better to be safe than sorry!

Other ingredients to be concerned about include the high levels of sugar and milk or cream (and also whipped cream!).

Both sugar and dairy can be difficult for dogs to digest.

Neither of these ingredients are toxic, but too much of either can make your dog very sick.

How Much Pumpkin Pie Can My Dog Eat?

Ideally, you should avoid giving pumpkin pie to your dog at all. There are better, healthier options available to celebrate the holiday.

If a family member sneaks your dog a couple of bites under the table, he will likely be okay.

Worst case scenario, he experiences an upset stomach. This is more likely in dogs that have sensitive stomachs to begin with.

But, a small amount out pumpkin pie won’t cause any serious health concerns.

What Should I Do if my Dog Ate Pumpkin Pie?

If your dog snuck a helping of pie off your counter or dinner table, don’t worry just yet.

Remove any remaining pie from where he can reach it. Then, take stock of how much he has eaten or if he managed to eat anything else.

Most dogs will experience slight stomach upset or diarrhea after eating pumpkin pie.

This is normal and not a cause for concern on it’s own.

But, if you notice any further problems or if your pup ate a whole pumpkin pie, it could be a sign of trouble. 

This includes:

  • Continued vomiting or diarrhea for an extended time 
  • Worsening vomiting or diarrhea 
  • Crying or whimpering 
  • Lethargy or disorientation 

You should also be on the watch for any of the warning signs of nutmeg poisoning.

Some dogs are more sensitive to these ingredients than others.

Contact your veterinarian and explain the situation. Make sure to give them as much information as possible including how much your dog ate.

They will be able to recommend the best steps to take.

This could include monitoring him at home or, in more serious cases, he may need medical care.

Can Dogs Eat Canned Pumpkin Pie Filling?

Canned pumpkin pie filling may look like plain canned pumpkin. But, if you read the ingredients, there is much more involved.

This combination of spices, sugar, and other additives isn’t healthy for your dog.

It is the filling that makes pumpkin pie unsafe for your dog to eat. Ingesting too much could make a dog sick.

You should avoid feeding  your dog canned pumpkin pie filling.

Can Dogs Eat Canned Pumpkin or Pumpkin Puree?

Unlike the pie filling, plain canned pumpkin or pumpkin puree is a great addition to your dog’s diet.

Before feeding it to your dog, check the ingredients. It should contain only one ingredient: cooked pumpkin.

Packed with vitamins and nutrients, pumpkin offers many health benefits. This is why many experts recommend adding pumpkin to your dog’s meals on occasion.

The benefits of pumpkin for dogs include:

  • Boost immune system
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Strength the heart, nerves and muscles
  • Regulate the digestive system
  • Support eye and brain health and development
  • Provide hydration

Other ways to add pumpkin into your dog’s diet include freezing it in a KONG toy or baking pumpkin treats.

Can Dogs Eat Pumpkin Pie Spice?

No, your dog should not eat pumpkin pie spice.

Not only is nutmeg toxic, but many of the other spices are also bad for dogs to eat.

These fall spices can upset your dog’s stomach causing vomiting or diarrhea. Too much could lead to further digestive issues.

Cloves, Allspice, and cinnamon can all be dangerous for your dog.

If you are a fan of cooking with pumpkin spice, keep it stored somewhere secure out of your dog’s reach.

Can Dogs Eat Fresh Pumpkin?

Pumpkin, either fresh or raw, carries many benefits for your dog.

This isn’t limited to just purchasing pumpkin puree or canned pumpkin. If you are cooking with a fresh pumpkin, your dog can partake in the fun.

If you are planning on cooking the pumpkin, there are many dog-friendly options.

Pumpkin can be baked, boiled, mashed, or pureed. You can feed this as a standalone treat or add it to your dog’s regular meal as a fun food topper.

What Thanksgiving Food Can Dogs Eat?

There are many foods and drinks served up at Thanksgiving that are unsafe for your dog. But, the good news is that there are also some great dog-friendly options.

Holiday foods your dog can enjoy include:

  • Plain turkey meat
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Mashed potatoes (easy on the milk or cream)
  • Corn kernels (in moderation, no cobs)
  • Green beans
  • Carrots
  • Cooked white rice
  • Apples

If you are interested in making a Thanksgiving plate up for your dog, there are plenty of safe options to enjoy!

What Happens if a Dog Eats Pie?

The pumpkin pie filling isn’t the only ingredient that could upset your dog’s stomach.

Most Pumpkin pies are made with a flaky pastry crust.

The crust may taste delicious, but it has some ingredients that could upset your dog’s stomach. They often contain high levels of butter or oils.

A small bite of pie crust likely isn’t going to cause any issues to be concerned about.

But, if your dog eats a larger amount, it could upset his stomach causing nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

If your dog eats too much, it could have more serious health complications. These high-fat ingredients could lead to pancreatitis.

Final Thoughts: Can Dogs Eat Pumpkin Pie?

Returning to the original question, can dogs eat pumpkin pie? While it’s not toxic, it’s not a good idea.

Pumpkin pie contains several ingredients that could make your dog feel ill.

In large amounts, it can also lead to potential health problems. Especially in dogs with sensitive stomachs or pre-existing health problems.

This Thanksgiving, you should skip sharing your pumpkin pie. Or, if you want to celebrate, make a dog-friendly alternative. Pet owners should stick to plain pumpkin if you want to feed your furry friend a healthy treat.

Photo of author
Britt Kascjak
Britt Kascjak has been active in the animal rescue community for over 15 years, volunteering, fostering, and advocating for organizations across Canada and the US. Her ‘pack’ includes her husband John, their 3 dogs – Daviana, Indiana, and Lucifer – and their 2 cats – Pippen and Jinx.